ECCF Fundholder Dr. Eldon Hill Receives the Governor’s Financial Literacy Award

From left to right: Gov. Tony Evers, Jessica Zarnke, Meredith Hill Stockford, Sue Bornick, Kathy Evers

The Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce and long-time Eau Claire resident Dr. Eldon Hill, who established the Draper Hills Financial Literacy Endowment at the Eau Claire Community Foundation, received the 2019 Governor’s Financial Literacy Awards for Organizations and Legacies (respectively) on Wednesday, February 19, at the State Capital.

 The Governor’s Financial Literacy Awards recognize organizations and individuals who make a significant difference in financial literacy education. The Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce was one of six organization recipients. The Chamber has worked creatively and in close partnership with the Eau Claire Area School District to instill financial literacy in the area.

Through collaboration with local institutions and school districts, the Chamber oversees a local Youth Apprenticeship Consortium, coordinates a financial literacy simulation called “Real Life Academy,” and recruits volunteers for career exploration opportunities that support students’ academic and career planning. These experiences are woven into the curricula of local schools to support long-term implementation.

The Eau Claire Area Youth Apprenticeship Consortium hosts approximately 85 students this year, with a goal of expansion in the years to come. In addition, during the past year, over 600 students attended Real Life Academy, which showed them how to budget for a month like a young professional.

Accepting on behalf of the Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce were Casey Schumacher, Andrew Neborak and Monica Obrycki.

The Legacy Award is given to “an organization, business, or individual whose purpose and heritage is ingrained in sustained financial literacy and capability, and whose reputation in doing so is held in high regard in serving as a model for others in carrying on the work of supporting financial literacy and expanding opportunities through financial capability. This lifetime recognition is intended to be conferred only once to recipients.”

Dr. Eldon Hill, a resident of Eau Claire for more than 30 years, was one of 5 legacy recipients.

 Dr. Hill, who grew up in Loyal, WI, and graduated from its high school in 1938, had a vision of giving back to the community that had nurtured him. In order to realize that vision, he established the Draper Hills Financial Literacy Endowment Fund at the Eau Claire Community Foundation, which supports a comprehensive K-12 Financial Literacy Program in the Loyal School District.

Dr. Hill’s passion for financial literacy, and his giving heart, have so far impacted more than 300 students. His vision has spurred innovative ways to teach financial literacy in the classroom, through summer school programming, and in an after-school night class to enhance learning and fun when it comes to financial literacy.

The Eau Claire Community Foundation, which holds the Draper Hills Financial Literacy Endowment Fund, is proud to help fulfill Dr. Hill’s vision by ensuring that Loyal’s Financial Literacy program is supported both now and for years to come. 

Although Dr. Hill was unable to attend the Awards Ceremony, his daughter Meredith Hill Stockford, Financial Literacy Instructor Jessica Zarnke, and Eau Claire Community Foundation Executive Director Sue Bornick accepted the Legacy Award on his behalf.